Sunday, 26 January 2014

Hello hello, 
Anna here and I’m very excited to be introducing my new range of Sewing Patterns For Children’s Clothing!

They’ve been a long time coming…..I’ve been working with Millie Moon for over a year now and I’ve often been asked when people see my little dresses in the shops ‘Do you have a pattern for that?’ or during workshops ‘Can I buy a pattern?’ and the answer is now YES!!

My mission was to create an easy to follow, multi sized range that was simple to sew at home and that you can buy all the lovely materials you need to make at Millie Moon. There’s 3 styles to fit ages 1-5 to start with - a very cute Party Dress with a full skirt, a versatile sleeveless Pinafore Dress and an A-line T Shirt Dress with built in sleeves.

They’ve been a challenge to put together, I had to use my, somewhat rusty and self taught, CAD experience and call upon some of my lovely friends for their help - huge thanks to Chris at Wing’s Art and Design Studio and Aran at Latitude Photography for their skills, and everyone at Millie Moon for their        enthusiasm and patience.

I hope you enjoy making the patterns as much as I’ve enjoyed putting them together - all feedback would be much appreciated, I’d love to see photos of your finished dresses and hear your suggestions for the next additions to the range.

Please note…….All my patterns are clearly marked Not For Commercial Use, this means they are for home use only by Mummys, Aunties, Nannys etc making for their friends and family NOT for business or any other monetary gains/sale. As simple as the patterns and instructions look they have taken me a long time to develop and I also design and sell handmade ready to wear dresses. Copyright law exists to protect designers who risk sharing their ideas and I hope people understand and respect this. Thanks x


So, 3 styles, 3 samples, 3 Millie Moon shops, I thought what better excuse for a little introductory giveaway! There’s 1 free pattern up for grabs at each Millie Moon store - simply pop in as soon as possible, have a look at the sample dress and enquire:

 ‘Do you have ANNA's pattern for that?‘ 

to claim the hot off the press 1st editions…… 

remember - Just one pattern per shop - first come first served

 I’m also aiming to cover making all the little dresses as workshops at Millie Moon, starting with the Pinafore Dress on 9th February in Keynsham and 27th April in Frome - these workshops include all materials too, bargain.

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Papped in Frome by Fromemaid

The Roman blinds for beginners workshop on September the 17th was fully booked and the new shop layout worked really well in allowing space for customers to browse whilst the workshop was in progress.

The photographer from the local paper Frome Times came by and Rachel; one half of the sisters team who own the business, invited him to return when the workshop was in full swing.
  Whether this was prearranged or spontaneous I do not know!  All four ladies were happy to have their picture taken and I think it will be a lovely momento of my time at Millie Moon when I am older, our copy has gone in our family keepsake box!

More importantly, each participant successfully completed a sample sized Roman blind and felt equipped with the skills and knowledge to go home and produce their full sized blinds in their homes.

I too was inspired  by the workshop and this seasons trend for "Scandi greys" soft furnishings and bought plenty of my favourite fabric; from the Michael Miller range "Just my Type" by Patty Young, to make blinds and a quilted throw for our bedroom. It feels very much a modern interpretation of Orla Keily to me.

Many thanks to Martyn of the Frome Times for allowing us to reproduce his photographs in this blog post with his kind permission.

By Fromemaid xxx

Join Fromemaid for her next Roman blind workshop In Wells on Sunday 20 October 2-5pm £40 inclusive of fabrics.  

The workshop makes a sample blind approx
65x35cm to allow you to learn the skills and gain the knowledge to go on and make a full size blind. 

Monday, 23 September 2013

There is nothing standard about our lamps :)

Workshop with Fromemaid.
Sunday the 8th of September saw my first whole day of lampshade making in our Frome shop.  We used the  individual lampshade kits now stocked by Millie Moon which make the whole activity that more approachable to beginners-not to mention more affordable, if you only want to make one, or a few for personal use.
Eight lovely women attended the  morning and afternoon workshops and as ever, the range of fabrics chosen varied greatly from person to person. So at the end of each workshop there were four very professional , individual lampshades to wear (!)

Or of course, you could make them as gifts or adorn your home with them, which probably makes more sense!

The sheer delight of these is they are so easy to do once you have made your first one.  There is no sewing involved at all, so they are really relatively quick to complete, certainly something you could make one evening after work on your kitchen table.

They are a really affordable way of adding some individuality to your home decor, we worked out to make a  size 30 cm barrel shade using our kit and buying  40cm  of your chosen  fabric would cost just £ 20.60.  

Come along and Join Fromemaid Vickie on the next Lampshade workshop -  Wells on October 20th.  Followed by another in Frome on January 5th. Price £40 including all materials

Friday, 6 September 2013

Invitation to the opening of Millie Moon in Keynsham, Bristol

On Saturday 7th September at 11am we will open the doors of our 3rd Millie Moon Haberdashery Boutique in Keynsham, Nr Bristol. Its so exciting! (if not just a little scary). 

Over the last month we have roped in family and friends to help with the painting, decorating and little extras in the new shop. We love the way it looks and we hope you do to. A very big thank you to everyone for their continued help and support, especially local designers; Make me a Dress, Ooh la la Lampshades, Gingergirl, Angela Lai Yen, Fromemaid, Little Fuzzkits, Jo Lucksted Ceramics, Edamay and Unicorn Shoes.

A special mention to John and Julie, Mum and Dad, Jamie, Sam and all the kids who have had to put up with us running around, writing lists and giving out jobs. 

We thought you might like a little sneaky peak of the new shop before we open officially... 

Lamp by 'ooh la la lampshades' in the fabric room

button bowls, fat quarters,  haberdashery
threads by Gutterman, Dresses by 'Make me a dress'

ribbons, toy stuffing and haberdashery
Moda pre-cuts

embroidery threads

We would love to see you all for the opening on Saturday, please come along... there may even be cake!
Rachel and Becki

our cute new sign

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

All in all a thumbs-up Freemotion Embroidery class.

Hello hello, I've been at it again - meeting some lovely ladies whilst teaching them the ways of freemotion embroidery at Millie Moon. For a little while now I've taken a break (only a very little one - a smudge of a break) from creating with freemotion embroidery, so it was a lovely change to my day to be passing on the skill to keen sew-ers along with showing off my lovely collection of Anchor Embroidery threads, taking my stork scissors out of hiding and demonstrating the ingenuity of the magic marker pen which I can almost guarantee an'ooh' and an 'aaah'. (All tools that can be found in your Millie Moon Shop.)

In the class I introduce you to the tools you will need, show you how to set up your machine and demonstrate a few different exercises to build your confidence and knowledge of freemotion embroidery. You will also aim to finish a picture in the class which you take away with you.

What is freemotion Embroidery?? - I hear you cry. Well in essence (also known as freehand machine embroidery) is a technique on your sewing machine that uses your creativity ability to embellish and decorate by drawing. This is not to say you have to be great at drawing to get the best out of the technique - if you like shape and colour or just sewing you should give it a try.
So anyone can have a try?
If you can already sew and are quite happy and confident with a sewing machine then you can try freemotion embroidery, but I wouldn't say this technique is for everyone. Its a technique I have learnt over the years that firstly you have to have patience (and lots of it at times) and also to keep experimenting and playing at - the more mistakes you make the more you learn and the more rewarding it becomes. A lot of my mistakes involving freemotion embroidery turn into happy mistakes. 
Do I need a special machine?
No, not at all. A household domestic sewing machine would work fine just check that the dog feeds (the zig zag teeth underneath your needle) can be lowered or you have a metal/plastic plate to go over them: to disengage them.

When teaching a class in freemotion embroidery - I do love it when a. the students really enjoy themselves and get excited about the technique and the time just flies away with you and b. you see a definite style appear within the way the student creates and manipulates the technique. Its very rewarding and all in all the class becomes a thumbs-up class. Have a look what some of you creative types have made in pass classes (sorry if your picture is not on here- I'm a bit rubbish at recording things) - 

If you fancy a taster at freemotion embroidery my next class is in the Millie Moon Wells shop on Sunday 25th August.......ooops that ones booked up now. Let's try again the next one is............10th November in Frome 

Also keep a look out for Freemotion Embroidery Christmas baubles 17th November in Wells and Freemotion Embroidery birds which will be making an appearance in the next batch of workshop.

Hopefully see you soon (perhaps on a freemotion embroidery class),

Monday, 5 August 2013

New Shop opening

We are very excited to be able to tell you all that, we have just picked up the keys for our 3rd Millie Moon shop.

The new shop will be in Keynsham, on the outskirts of Bristol

Its a lovely high street, bustling with busy shops and lots of independant traders. Can't wait to start filling it with lovely things. 

Pictures coming soon...

Thursday, 18 July 2013

Sewing Sisters

Eliza M Ruby Dress Pattern 

Well we finally had 5 minutes to do a bit of sewing. We both decided to make a dress for our 5th birthday, so we went for the Eliza M Vintage sewing patterns.  Becki chose the Daisy dress and I chose the Ruby dress. 
Eliza M Daisy Dress Pattern

That was the easy part as we have both chosen patterns that flatter our shapes, the hard part was choosing the fabric. 

Becki settled on a Moda print  'Beacon Cove'  with Lobsters. Bright and summery and perfect for this weather we are having at the moment. Using approx 3metres of fabric for the full skirt the dress cost £44.50 (plus pattern) Not bad for a summer frock.

Becki in the lobster Daisy dress 
I decided to go for a simple denim which will be a great staple in the wardrobe all year, but also an inexpensive way to test the pattern out. But, now I've made it successfully, which fabric next?? I added a red polka dot bias to trim the armholes and the neck. In total my dress cost me £12.30! (plus pattern) what a bargain. 

Rachel in the Denim Ruby dress
The patterns were easy to follow and simple to put together. We worked on the separately, and everything was going well until we got to the fitting. Then the text messages started to flow and a conversation on how to alter the shoulders began. It turns out that we both have strange shoulders and short bodies (blame the parents!) so we had to make similar alterations to the patterns. This was nice and simple and the dresses were finished in a day! 

We are both really pleased with them and had so many comments about them that we thought you might like to take a look. Its so nice to be able to say "I made that!" 

Rachel x

The Eliza M vintage sewing patterns are available to buy on our website £14 each and free postage.